Going Deeper 01.21.2021

The second reading for Epiphany 3... 1 Corinthians 7:29-31

I mean, brothers and sisters, the appointed time has grown short; from now on, let even those who have wives be as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no possessions, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away.

‚ÄčAt first, this passage might strike us as a little strange.  Written nearly 2000 years ago, it would seem that Paul was convinced that the end was near.  Oops.

But there is an important message here for us in our time.  We ought to assume the same thing... and let it impact our lives accordingly.  And the impact should be significant.

In his book, The Problem of Pain, C.S. Lewis wrote that "Pain is God's megaphone to awaken a deafened world."  Given the events of the last year, perhaps God is asking "Can you hear me now?"  While many hope for an eventual return to our old normal, perhaps we ought to be asking ourselves if there were some radical problems which needed to be recognized and changed.  

Paul urges a radical shifting of priorities.  Maybe we need to be thinking deeply about the same thing.  What is most important to us?  Are we seeking above all to be prepared for the end of the world... at least as we know it?  No, I'm not talking about some kind of sober and pessimistic mindset.  I'm talking about treasuring what matters most... love received and love extended.  Being grateful stewards of what God has entrusted to us in order to be a blessing to others.  Being increasingly filled with the healing light of God's grace so that we shine as lights in dark times.

And along the way we will discover that this is the most meaningful and truly joy-and-peace-filled life possible.

With You in His Love,

Mark Gabbert, Pastor

Zion Lutheran Church, Wellington

"Gratefully Growing Servants"